The BBC made an embarrassing mistake during its live broadcast of the funeral of George Floyd, an African American man, whose death in police custody sparked the biggest protests against racism in the United States since the killing of Martin Luther King in 1968. In a segment where it spoke about Floyd’s sports career it showed the photo of another man - George Floyd, a former professional football player from the New York Jets.
BBC use photo of the WRONG George Floyd https://t.co/mg9UPsXSTq— Marcher (@MarcherLord1) June 10, 2020
Seconds later the BBC showed the correct photos of George Floyd and rightly mentioned his success in football, leading his school team to the state championships. The news sparked angry comments on social media.
How insensitive can BBC be, that is unbelievable and wrong, someone needs to be fired for above mistake!— gayner Morgan (@GaynerMorgan) June 10, 2020
How can you get this so wrong?— JKdreams (@nasrin73) June 10, 2020
Incensed netizens accused the BBC of racism and unprofessionalism.
Others highlighted the importance of the ongoing protests against racial discrimination and said this would never happen to a white person.
Here we go again? This is why diversity is paramount in media because all black people do not look alike— BLACKLIVESMATTER ✊🏾 (@sylvie_seven) June 10, 2020
That would never happen to a white person.— Stuart Gibson #FBPE (@sumergobibo) June 10, 2020
Many users noted that this was not the first time the corporation has been involved in an embarrassing mix-up.
Seriously, *How* Many times are the BBC going to do this?... 🤷♂️🤦♂️— Karl Booton (@karlbooton) June 10, 2020
Other users said the blunder prompted them to cancel their BBC subscription and urged others to follow suit.
Suprises you lol. Takes 2 mins to cancel your TV license now. Best 2 mins ive spent in a long long time.— UshuaiaKnights (@UshuaiaKnight) June 10, 2020
Scrap fee now.— Paul Clarke (@progamblertip) June 10, 2020
The mishap came hours after the BBC made another awkward mistake. In an interview with Ellis Genge, an English rugby union player, the corporation put a photo of another English ruby player Lewis Ludlam.
"I’m actually f**ked off with this happening to every mixed race/black sportsperson. Must be the 15th time in less than a year just between me and Lewis Ludlam", Genge wrote in a statement on Twitter.
In January, the BBC suffered still another embarrassing mix-up. The corporation was harshly criticised for mistaking NBA superstar Kobe Bryant for another basketball giant LeBron James. In its story about the tragic death of Bryant, who died in a helicopter crash on 26 January, the BBC put up footage of LeBron James. The gaffe was especially surprising because the footage showed LeBron’s jersey with his last name in the video.